Banks in Australia Cancel Banking Services to Bitcoin Companies

Westpac and Commonwealth Bank of Australia are among the banks that have closed down the accounts belonging to bitcoin exchanges including Bit Trade and Buyabitcoin. Both Westpac and Commonwealth Bank of Australia are themselves invested in research on blockchain technology for banking operations.

Most of the affected bitcoin companies have been customers of these two banks. But according to Australian Financial Review, chairman of The Australian Digital Currency Commerce Association Ron Tucker has mentioned that the issue is not confined to just two banks and other major banks in the country have also started to take similar measures.

The Australian digital currency industry seems to be ready to have discuss about the issues concerning closure of accounts, but allegedly the banks are not providing any information regarding the issues which might have pushed them to make this move. Some people are suggesting the involvement of banking lobby which is trying to prevent the rise of bitcoin, assumed to be endangering the banking and fintech business still following conventional banking methods.

Also the timing of this move raises a few questions about the legitimacy of the banks’ actions against bitcoin exchanges. Especially after Westpac CEO’s recent comments on digital currency innovation and its threat to conventional banking practices. Banks may however claim that their move is influenced by non-compliance of these affected companies to existing AML and KYC regulations.

READ MORE: Commonwealth Bank of Australia Partners with Other Global Banks over Blockchain Technology



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